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BRICKS: Basic Research in Informatics for Creating the Knowledge Society (Bsik)


BRICKS is addressing the need for a strong impulse in fundamental research in informatics. This impulse is necessary for improving the innovation climate in the Netherlands and for generating sustainable economic growth driven by ICT. The main objectives of BRICKS thus are:

  • to perform basic research in informatics that aims at new challenges within the priority areas of the research agenda NOAG-i;
  • to strengthen existing excellence in order to produce excellence, to extend and strengthen a research infrastructure with lasting co-operations;
  • to increase the number of researchers in the computer sciences needed to build key competences for the knowledge society;
  • to intensify interaction with industry and other ICT users in society, and
  • to promote efficient technology transfer by spin-off generation.

To achieve these objectives, approximately 80 percent of the budget is allocated to research projects with well defined goals as described in Chapter 6 of the Project Proposal. The remaining 20 percent will be available for excellent innovative research groups from all Dutch universities that will be selected by NWO on a competitive basis. The key BRICKS questions to be addressed include:

  • how to improve security and dependability of Internet use and software applications;
  • how to develop novel paradigms for advanced computing algorithms based on quantum theory and formal methods for the dynamic operation of networked software components;
  • how to develop a new generation of database technology necessary for ambient intelligence and data mining on peta scale;
  • how to provide knowledge and tools to predict and control quality of services in future networks consisting of a heterogeneous mix of broadband, wireless and personal area networks;
  • how to develop new approaches in scientific computing, visualization, and virtual environments to support and progress industrial processes, e-science and e-learning;
  • how to develop advanced intelligent decision support systems for workflow optimization, and
  • how to devise new algorithms needed for bio-informatics and breakthroughs in bio-technology